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"You must consider these riddles," the Sphinx said, "and tell me the riddle that I did not reveal."

The Sphinx smiled, the gears in her jaw creaking, her teeth a nightmare of rust. Her left eye flickered, but none of its terror was diminished. The ruins were silent. In the

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"I think," she finally said, "that the riddle you did not reveal is this: why do these riddles exist in the first place? Why do these curious automatons, these mute children of Hephaestus, behave as they do, forcing me to devise these intricate solutions? Each is a riddle, but the greater riddle is their purpose."

The Sphinx did not answer. Her eye was lifeless now. Athena removed it from its socket, knowing that its power would aid her, yet feeling also a deep sorrow at the passing of this fearful creature.

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